Mumbai: The 21-member farmers’ steering committee, which was formed five days ago, decided to meet the high-powered group of ministers in Mumbai on Sunday, but the agitation against the government for the farmers’ demands will continue. The members of the steering committee announced this in Mumbai on Saturday.
Prominent members of the committee including BJP ally and MP Raju Shetti, Ramchandrabapu Patil, Anil Ghanwat, Raghunath Patil, Ajit Navale, MLA Bacchu Kadu and Jayant Patil were to attend the meeting in Mumbai.
In the first meeting held in Nashik, the committee had given an ultimatum to the government to decide over the farmers’ demands. After the ultimatum, the State government formed a high-powered group under the chairmanship of Revenue Minister Chandrakant Patil to discuss with the committee.
There were rumours that a rift had developed in the farmers’ steering committee as Raju Shetti was not happy with the steering committee and would not attend Saturday’s meeting. But Raju Shetti attended the meeting and also refuted the rumours about a rift in the steering committee. In Saturday’s meeting, the farmers steering committee decided that 35 members from the committee will represent the farmers in the meeting with the ministers group on Sunday in Mumbai.
The committee decided that farmers should get 100 per cent loan waiver, minimum support price for agricultural produce, and that recommendations of Dr Swaminathan committee should be implemented. Besides these demands, also cases lodged against the protesting farmers should be withdrawn.
Raju Shetti said that these are the main demands, which will be put before the ministers high-powered group. “The government is claiming that 90 per cent of demands have been fulfilled but that is not the truth. The farmers have no time to wait till October for loan waiver,” he said.
“If the government again fails to fulfil the demands, then the agitation will intensify,” informed Raghunath Dada Patil.